Wednesday 12 August 2015

Tuck Yew tucks off: What exactly does a Transport Minister do anyway?

You won't have Lui Tuck Yew to kick around any more, because, gentlemen, this is his last MRT breakdown. (Nixon reference. Google it.)

The Facebook page called Singaporeans Demand Lui Tuck Yew to Step Down Now had reason to celebrate yesterday.

Hooray!!!!! (Y) #vtoSINGAPORE: Transport Minister Lui Tuck Yew will not stand for re-election in the coming General Election!!
Posted by Singaporeans Demand Lui Tuck Yew to Step Down Now on Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Ironically, the page is also celebrating the demise of its reason for existing.

But then the people behind the page could easily start another page called Singaporeans Demand (Whoever The New Transport Minister Is) to Step Down Now the next time the MRT breaks down again, which it will.

It's the circle of life.

I'm not sure about this post though:

We did it!!!Lui Tuck Yew finally stepping down - three years after we made the call!Good job Singapore!
Posted by Singaporeans Demand Lui Tuck Yew to Step Down Now on Tuesday, August 11, 2015

"We did it"?

Yeah, right. A minister quits politics because of a Facebook page with 2,819 likes. Don't stop believin'.

But is the Transport Minister really to blame for the MRT breakdowns? What exactly does he do anyway (besides expressing extreme concern)?

I mean, isn't the CEO of LTA responsible for the public transport system already? Why isn't there a Facebook page dedicated to demanding the LTA CEO to step down?

This Facebook post by Law and Foreign Affairs Minister K Shanmugam may provide a clue to what the Transport Minister's duties are:

According to Mr Shanmugam, Mr Lui "oversaw the announcements of so many major initiatives".

So Mr Lui didn't even oversee the actual initiatives. He just oversaw the announcements of them.

What does that mean anyway?

Mr Lui proof-reads the press releases?

Mr Shanmugam also wrote: "And you knew that with Tuck Yew in charge, the billions the Ministry were spending would be disbursed honestly."


That's a lot of money to be in charge of for a guy who proof-reads the press releases.

JUNE 2016 UPDATE: Mr Lui Tuck Yew is appointed Chip Eng Seng independent director